Independent Russian Journalist, Elections Expert Reports Threats

An independent Russian journalist and elections expert has reported receiving threats toward his family and surveillance over his article about a regional elections official seeking re-election to the State Duma this September.  Vasily Weissenberg, an expert at the independent Golos election monitor, had published an article about Andrei Gibert, the head of the Yamal-Nenets autonomous district’s…

Fake Russian-Language Tiktok Scams Popular Accounts – Kommersant

A fake “TikTok for Business” website has appeared in Russia that hijacks popular accounts with a fraudulent content monetization scheme, the Kommersant business daily reported Friday. This is the first time that the widespread social media entrapment method has involved the popular Chinese short-video app, the newspaper cited the Infosecurity cybersecurity company’s leading analyst Alexander…

Russia’s Second Coronavirus Vaccine Triggers Antibodies, Studies Say After Controversy

Russia’s second coronavirus vaccine triggers antibodies in all recipients, according to early-trial study results involving 100 volunteers published Thursday. EpiVacCorona, a two-shot peptide vaccine developed by the Siberia-based Vektor Institute, came under scrutiny this week after Phase 3 trial participants claimed that it does not produce an immune response. No peer-reviewed research on the jab has…

Russia Rolls Out 3rd Coronavirus Vaccine

Russia has introduced its third registered coronavirus vaccine for general use, Interfax reported Thursday, citing its developers and the Education and Science Ministry. CoviVak, developed by the state-run Chumakov Research Center, is a two-dose, whole-virion vaccine that uses complete, but inactive, particles of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes Covid-19. Mass production of CoviVak began Thursday…

Russia Launches More UK Telecom Satellites into Space

A Soyuz rocket blasted off from the Vostochny cosmodrome in Russia’s Far East on Thursday carrying 36 UK telecommunications and internet satellites, the Roscosmos space agency said. OneWeb, a London-headquartered company, is working to complete the construction of a constellation of low earth orbit satellites providing enhanced broadband and other services to countries around the world.…

Trudeau Says Putin Behind ‘Terrible Things,’ Skirts Killer Label

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Wednesday Vladimir Putin is responsible for “terrible things,” but wouldn’t go so far as U.S. President Joe Biden in calling the Russian leader a “killer.” Trudeau, unaccustomed to criticizing other world leaders in public, was questioned during an interview on SiriusXM radio’s The Bridge with Peter Mansbridge about Biden’s…

Telegram Raises $1Bln, With Russian Direct Investment Fund Buying Bonds

Telegram has sold more than $1 billion in bonds to international investors, founder Pavel Durov announced Tuesday —  with Russia’s state-run Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) now among the firm’s backers. Durov, who founded Russia’s leading social network VKontakte before launching messaging app Telegram, said the investment will “enable Telegram to continue growing globally, while sticking…

Trial Subjects For Russia’s Second Coronavirus Vaccine Urge Probe Into Effectiveness

Clinical trial volunteers for Russia’s second coronavirus vaccine have demanded the country’s Health Ministry launch an investigation to explore claims the jab does not produce an immune response. The group — which is currently taking part in Phase 3 studies for Russia’s EpiVacCorona shot, a peptide vaccine developed by the Vektor Institute in Novosibirsk —…

Russia, After Confusion, Says Coronavirus Re-Vaccination Possible

Russian health officials said Tuesday that re-vaccination with any of Russia’s domestically produced coronavirus vaccines after receiving the country’s Sputnik V shot is possible, clarifying earlier remarks suggesting that antibodies could destroy future vaccine components. Natalia Pshenichnaya, senior epidemiologist at national consumer protection watchdog Rospotrebnadzor, said earlier in the day that the Sputnik V shot’s long-term…

Russian Foreign Minister Says EU ‘Destroyed’ Relations with Moscow

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has accused European Union leaders of “destroying” relations with Moscow, the state-run TASS news agency reported Tuesday.  “There are no relations with the European Union as an organization. The entire infrastructure of these relations has been destroyed by the unilateral decisions of Brussels,” Lavrov was quoted as saying during a…

Russian Billionaire Abramovich Sues Author Catherine Belton for Defamation

Russian billionaire and Chelsea Football Club owner Roman Abramovich has launched a defamation lawsuit against author Catherine Belton over claims that he had bought the club at President Vladimir Putin’s orders. According to Belton’s critically acclaimed 2020 book “Putin’s People,” Abramovich allegedly bought Chelsea in 2003 at Putin’s direction as part of an effort to…

Putin Slams Vaccine Criticism, to Get Jab on Tuesday

President Vladimir Putin on Monday dismissed foreign criticism of Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine and said he would get vaccinated himself on Tuesday. Speaking at a televised meeting with health officials, the 68-year-old Russian leader described recent remarks in Europe questioning the need for the Russian vaccine as “strange.” “We are not imposing anything on anyone……

Russia Charges Governor, Pharma Exec in Major Bribery Case

The governor of Russia’s Penza region and a leading pharmaceutical executive have been charged in a large-scale bribery case, Russia’s Investigative Committee said Monday.   Ivan Belozertsev, Biotek pharmaceutical group founder Boris Spiegel and suspected accomplices were detained over the weekend on suspicion of exchanging bribes for lobbying Biotek’s interests.  Investigators said Belozertsev accepted money and…